Recent blog posts

Donald Fry: Maryland faces ‘not exciting, but steady’ economic growth

By: Donald C. Fry  After lagging behind the national rate of economic growth for three years, Maryland’s economy is bound to improve soon, right? Yes, but don’t expect a return to pre-recession economic growth rates in Maryland anytime soon, according to Federal Reserve Bank economist R. Andrew Bauer. “The way that I would describe next year is that it’s not going to be an exciting time, but a steady time,” Bauer told more than 300 business leaders, managers and private-sector advocates who attended the Greater Baltimore Committee’s 2014 Economic Outlook on October 23.    “What I think is optimistic perhaps isn’t your version of what optimistic is,” Bauer told a breakfast audience at the Hilton Baltimore.  He is senior regional economist for the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond’s Baltimore office. Bauer forecasts 2.1 percent and 2.8 percent growth in Maryland’s real gross domestic product for 2014 and 2015, respectively, after our... Continue reading
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Center Maryland Radio Minute -- Barry Rascovar on the Transportation "Lockbox" Ballot Question

Political commentator Barry Rascovar talks about the transportation "lockbox" ballot question in the latest segment of Center Maryland's new feature, the Center Maryland Radio Minute, heard exclusively on WNEW 99.1. Check out the segment, and a special thanks to SaveFarmFamilies.org for helping to sponsor this week's Center Maryland Radio Minute.... Continue reading
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Josh Kurtz: Against All Odds

By: Josh Kurtz  The circumstances aren’t nearly as dire for Maryland Democrats as they are for their national counterparts. But there are some eerie similarities between the U.S. senators who are fighting for their political lives this fall and the Maryland state senators who are fighting for theirs. What they have in common is the hostile territory the Democrats are battling on. To prevail in these contests, the Democrats are going to have to dramatically surpass their party’s average performance levels, in some cases by 20 points or more. But Democrats have quality candidates in many of these races. Not only that, many of these candidates have a strong political brand – either through their own work, or from the political legacies of their families – that often inoculates them even in the most challenging electoral environments. The question is whether the political undertow is just too powerful this fall, and... Continue reading
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Laslo Boyd: Kurt Schmoke and the Politics of Higher Education

By: Laslo Boyd  Most people in Baltimore know Kurt Schmoke as the former three-term mayor of the city.  Less well known is that he has spent much of the time since leaving City Hall in academia.  For several years, he was Dean of the Law School at Howard University in Washington, D.C., and he recalls that experience with great fondness. For the past three years, he has been at various times General Counsel and Interim Provost at Howard. As a result, it wasn’t far into our interview that Schmoke brought up the subject of shared governance at universities. It is, he contended, a “style, not something you just pay lip service to.” When I asked him if he had raised any concerns during the search process for president of the University of Baltimore, he told me that he had asked whether the University was looking for an academic to be its... Continue reading
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Center Maryland Radio Minute -- Josh Kurtz on President Obama's visit to rally voters

Center Maryland columnist Josh Kurtz reflects on the significance of President Obama's recent voter rally in Prince George's County in the latest segment of Center Maryland's new feature, the Center Maryland Radio Minute, heard exclusively on WNEW 99.1. Check out the segment, and a special thanks to SaveFarmFamilies.org for helping to sponsor this week's Center Maryland Radio Minute.... Continue reading
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